AND, AS JOHN McNAMEE DISCOVERED, IT UNLOCKS PLENTY OF SECRET WOMEN’S BUSINESS!
When author Margaret Woodberry’s husband, Allan, read her new book, he got the shock of his life.
“Although we’ve been married for 50 years, he said he never realized how little he knew about women,” Margaret laughs.
And it’s obvious from reading Margaret’s book, Health and Beauty Tips for Women Aged Between 60 and 80, that many other men will benefit from the experience.
It’s taken Margaret more than 10 years to compile the information for the book and she has drawn on all her life experiences to help provide advice for women who feel they’re in that vulnerable age bracket.
“We’ve been in the fine antiques and jewellery business for more than 40 years and I always felt that I should look my best in the shop when I was dealing with customers.
“It’s not about going over the top it’s about looking as natural as you can and making the most of your appearance,” Margaret, who admits to being closer to 80 than 60, told Go55s.
“Always making sure your hair is done nicely and swept back the right way, that your makeup is subtle and appropriate.
“I’ve always prided myself on the fact that I’ve been a good-looking girl and what got me started on the book was after I realized women were always asking me what was my secret, and how come I always looked the best I could.
“It’s a sad fact of growing old that our skin starts going craggy, our hair starts getting thinner, our pigmentation suffers and we get wrinkles.
“I realized that all the advice on health and beauty tips were geared for the younger person, all the magazines and the online sites didn’t cater for any women over the age of 60.
“So I wanted to change that and if you like I became my own guinea pig for all sorts of treatments and health regimes which I could pass on to women of my own age.
“I’ve never worked in the beauty business but for the book it was simply a matter of doing all the research I could among the experts and sharing my secrets, if you like,” she said.
Margaret says that she was once a pack-a-day smoker but gave it up more than 40 years ago and admits she still gets cravings.
“Apart from the health hazards, smoking causes lines and furrows around the mouth and I have outlined in my book various treatments to help counteract this.
“Of course when you give up smoking you’ve got more money to spend on yourself and over the years I have been paying a couple of thousand dollars on botox and filler treatments,” she said.
“I must stress that my book is not about looking younger but all about making the most of your appearance.”
Some of the fascinating topics covered in the book include:
- How to revolutionise skin care and make-up.
- Common sense and good health.
- How to dress and look your best.
- Help for thinning hair.
- Counteract gravity.
- Look taller, look slimmer.
- Beauty treatments that work.
- The magic of liposomes and peptides.
- Succeeding with Retin A.
- Never suffer from jetlag again.
In her introduction to the book, Margaret writes: “We (our age group) are an untapped market. I say untapped because so few retailers are catering to our needs.
“For example when I am searching along a rack of summer dresses in a shop, I am looking for a garment with sleeves – often only about four out of 50 garments will have sleeves.
“The dew of youth has gone, we no longer see a flash of girlishness as we sometimes did during our 50s…while we cannot look young anymore, if we take the trouble we can still look beautiful.”
Margaret admits that in her book many of the exercise tips may not be appropriate for women at the older end of the age bracket and that some of her information may attract criticism.
“I’m not being politically correct or tactful and I feel sometimes I could become a grumpy old woman when necessary,” Margaret laughs.
Delving at random into Margaret’s cornucopia of “secret women’s business” can be fascinating, especially for a bloke.
For example for advice in the clothing section: “Choose jeans and slacks with pockets on the backside. This is flattering and makes the bottom look smaller.”
And on the same theme: “ Never wear pantyhose or elastic panties under slacks or jeans; makes you look shapeless.”
Margaret also touches on such sensitive tops as the Invisibility of Older People, a subject close to my heart!
“When you reach our age, you know that older people are invisible not only to younger people but also to many older people. We experience this in shops and at reception counters..all over the place. Never be a doormat. All we can do is look as smart as possible and smile, smile, smile.”
“Whilst we acknowledge that everybody is attracted to youth and beauty…it would seem sensible for both commercial and non-commercial enterprises to concentrate on some staff training to include respect plus good and fast service for senior customers. After all we have money and will soon comprise more than a quarter of the population. Their attitude to us may make or break a business.” (Hear, hear, you hear me cry!!!)
Margaret is also a big fan of the flirtatious woman…as she writes: “Sexual attraction has nothing to do with age. Beautiful women are sexy women at an age, so be prepared to attract attention from the opposite sex…..To know that you are desirable is good for your self-esteem and will strengthen your resolve to care for your appearance….if you’re single and available, let a little romance into your life. Flirting is great fun and how far you let it go depends on your inclination and circumstances.”
Margaret and her husband still live in her native Tasmania, at the picturesque tourist town of St Helen’s in the island’s north-east where their antique and jewellery business is now run by her daughter Josephine and her husband Ben. Her other daughter Sophie has a teenage girl Lily, the apple of her doting grandmother’s eye.
And finally a major tip from the author: “Make flexibility your middle name…it’s not easy but I’m still trying!!!”
- HEALTH & BEAUTY TIPS FOR WOMEN AGED BETWEEN 60 AND 80 is published by Wellington Bridge Press 2015 and distributed by Blackgum Distribution Services. Available now. RRP $24.95.
Pic 1 MARGARET WOODBERRY…..finally a book that will help older women feel better about themselves